I'm thinking I'm the last of the blogger crew to read this book so maybe everyone has moved on. Still, we do love to talk books so I'm doing a, uh, thing.
I'm going with a B-, yeah, well, no, that's good.
Cindy Blurb: Once upon a time there was a young girl from a wealthy family who volunteered at a shelter. While volunteering she met a young man and she made an impression. Apparently, Ben, (the young man) used to break and enter into her family's home when no one was around to just be there. Or something like that.
The book opens when Ben discovers his drunken father has finally kicked the bucket and leaves the shelter to start a new life. Before leaving he peeks in the window of the young girl's home on Christmas Eve and carries the scene with him for the next 12 years.
As a Cindy aside, at no point did I get the feeling that the young girl, Caroline Lake, had any clue who this guy was. Wasn't even on her radar.
Anyways, 12 years later Jack Prescott (Ben) has finally made his way back to find Caroline. Figuring she'll be happily married and living the life of those with money, I just can't say what he was hoping for. Apparently just a glimpse before he started the next chapter of his life.
Imagine his shock (and delight?) when he discovers that Caroline lost her parents years before in a traffic accident and that her only brother survived but needed intense care until just a few months ago. Since her father had been making bad financial decisions, Caroline is far from the rich girl he once knew.
Caroline, meanwhile, is one lonely woman who lost her entire family but holds the family home by sheer will even though the boiler is tempermental and her boarders have all left for more gracious accommodations. Even though this new man looks scruffy and down on his luck, she is grateful when he doesn't question the rent she needs and promptly takes him home.
A weekend of loving, an evil guy, sharing of Caroline's pain and voila, HEA. At least, I'm thinking HEA even though it wasn't on the page.
First order of business, if you all read this book and there was a scene where Jack and Caroline sit and sort out everything that happened and declared their love for each other, let me know.
Mine was missing.
Huh, after checking the cover of this book again, I don't know why I had it in my head that it was supposed to be erotic romance.
I love me an alpha hero and although Jack had many of these characteristics I'm thinking he may have had some beta in him also. Or obsession. Something like that.
When Jack comes back into Caroline's life he is thinking he's not good enough for her. That lasted thirty seconds. Then it was he had to have her and finally, no one else would ever have her. Thing is, Jack never tells Caroline who he really is. He let's her get to know the man he is now (which is fine but when Caroline got creeped out at one point, I was all, you better run!!) although his plans are to now live out the rest of his days with Caroline in her parents house. (creepy)
I'm not sure I can explain it very well but it was like Jack was in love with the vision he saw 12 years ago of a family sitting around singing Christmas carols in a beautiful home. In fact, when he makes the mistake that throws Caroline it's about the house and Caroline is forced to wonder how he would know something had changed in one of the rooms years before he showed up. My question after discovering that would be, do you love me or the house? Cause I'm painting that room purple!
There is also the falling in love during a snow storm over a weekend. Although I don't remember Caroline ever thinking she was in love until she knew she was in serious trouble with the evil guy. I did like that Jack wasn't sure why his chest was hurting every once in a while but then, he thought he was only sexually attracted to Caroline so discovering he could care was sweet although, maybe a little more of that would have kept my 'creepy' sensation to a minimum.
I should also mention that I didn't read one part of the evil guys side of the story. Nope. I started, knew what was going to happen next and flipped the pages until I came back to the H/H. I did that through the entire book so there were a few plot points that came together for me closer to the end but then I wasn't missing anything either. So I also missed many of the graphic scenes that Keishon (okay, I can't find the review) had warned me of in her review of this book. Knowing it was about 'blood diamonds' had me skimming sections and the parts that I did read were horrifying but I kept my eye from settling on the words. Hard, but I wanted to read a romance, not another shoot 'em up, mystery, planet saving, specie protecting story line.
Just needed a little love.
In the end, I would have preferred more dialogue (the first sex scene was a little weird in that Caroline said nothing and even Jack was wondering WTF?) and perhaps a closing that would have let me know that Jack wasn't really just obsessed but was in love. Like maybe giving up the house. I'm just saying. I wanted to know that Jack and Caroline would love each other no matter what. They could move and get new jobs or travel for the rest of their lives. Whatever. Just the knowledge that they weren't about to relive Carolines' parent's lives. (Caroline's father enjoyed spoiling his wife (which I can totally seeing Jack doing) but he was spending money he didn't have and for some reason I feel like Jack could do the same thing without saying to Caroline 'hey, financially we need to scale back'. Sure, you think 8 mill should hold you but worse things have been known to happen)
So, I enjoyed the hero although worried he was more obsessed than in love. I couldn't really tell if Caroline loved Jack or loved the fact that he could fix stuff and she wouldn't have to be alone anymore. AND it all happened in a weekend.
B- cause it kept me reading and it was better than some of the other books I have forced myself to read.
I'm not sure which book I'm going to read next as I'm worried if I read the AS I'll fall back into the great book blues but then, I really should read it so I can write a 'proper' review. Meh. Who needs that when I write up these kind of beauts?
I bought Lover Unbound today and could I maybe get a little warning next time that I'll need a front end loader when picking up a book of this size. Egads! I'm thinking I'll be skimming more than a few sections of this one.
On that note, I have pulled some books from the TBR pile and put them in one section to help with the 20 book challenge I'm working up the nerve to do. It's amazing the treasures that are lying in wait up in that book room.